Super Bowl of Washington: 'Covfefe' parties at bars for Comey's testimony on Trump
US bars are offering $5 Russian vodka drinks, “impeachmint” cocktails and free drinks with every presidential tweet to draw crowds on Thursday to watch fired FBI Director James Comey's televised testimony to congress.
Television "watch parties," typically hosted for sporting events and awards shows, are planned at homes and bars across the country for Comey’s 10am ET appearance before the Senate Intelligence Committee.
Comey accused President Donald Trump on Wednesday of asking him to drop an investigation of former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn as part of a probe into Russia's alleged meddling in the 2016 presidential election.
In dramatic written testimony, Comey said Trump told him at a meeting in the White House in February: "I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting Flynn go".
Comey's statement, posted on the Senate Intelligence Committee's website, said Trump also called him on 30 March to say he had nothing to do with Russia and asked what "we could do to lift the cloud" of the FBI's Russia investigation.
During that phone call, Comey said he told Trump the FBI was not investigating the president personally. "He repeatedly told me: 'We need to get that fact out,'” Comey said.
Comey said Trump told him at a one-on-one dinner on 27 January, a week after the president took office, that: "I need loyalty. I expect loyalty."
During the dinner, the president asked him if he wanted to stay on as FBI director, Comey said. The former FBI head said he became concerned that Trump was trying to create "some sort of patronage relationship".
Super Bowl of Washington
The Axelrad Beer Garden in Houston labelled Comey’s Thursday testimony "the SUPER BOWL of Washington".
“Join us for an early morning beer and engage in friendly debate with fellow patrons,” a post on the Axelrad Facebook page said. The bar also is serving a drink called the impeachmint.
In Washington, Shaw's Tavern was one of several bars promising to open its doors a half hour before Comey begins speaking, with a $10 “FBI” breakfast special. In this case, FBI stands not for Federal Bureau of Investigation, but French toast, bacon and ice cream.
"Grab your friends, grab a drink and let’s COVFEFE!” the tavern said on Facebook, referring to a truncated Trump tweet last week with that "word" that left some people scratching their heads.
The Partisan bar just off the tourist-rich National Mall will offer “The Last Word” and “Drop the Bomb” cocktails, and "The Patriot" breakfast sandwich.
“We’ve got two TVs in our bar and we’re going to have the audio on full blast,” said Molly Hippolitus, a spokeswoman for the bar's owners. "I’m expecting a pretty good mix, a bipartisan crowd to show up.”
The Union Pub in Washington planned to buy patrons a round of drinks every time Trump, a frequent tweeter, posts on Twitter during Comey's testimony.
Several bars in San Francisco will open as early as 6am local time to allow patrons to gather for the testimony.
"It's important for us to be well-informed," said bartender Darren "Buddy" Jaques at the Mix, where the TV will be tuned into the hearing.